In the comments below Thursday's lesson, I noticed a useful question from nav, and a very thoughtful response from Kati. It's great to see people discussing things and helping each other in the comments below my lessons!
To add to Kati's response, I'd like to say a little more about using 'model sentences'. First, I'll quickly repeat two useful points from Kati's comment:
- As Kati points out, the 'model sentences' exercise is probably more suited to writing task 1. This is because task 1 is quite predictable: we know that we'll have to describe trends, compare numbers or describe steps, so we can practise specific types of sentence for these purposes (e.g. 'while' sentences, 'respectively' sentences etc.).
- There are some sentence types that I repeatedly use in writing task 2 (e.g. a 'while' sentence in the introduction). See Kati's comment for links to lessons about these sentence types.
Now here's the final tip that I wanted to add:
Try not to confuse 'model' sentences with 'template' sentences. Examiners don't like essays that are full of memorised template language (read this warning).
On the other hand, any correct sentence can be used as a model. For example, we could take the first sentence of today's lesson ("In the comments below Thursday's lesson, I noticed a useful question.") and invent a new sentence that follows a similar structure or pattern (e.g. On the way home from yesterday's lecture, I read an interesting article in the paper.).
I think you could turn this into a great daily exercise. But the aim would be to improve your English, not to collect template sentences for IELTS.